Morris Williams Realty
Morris Williams Realty
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How to Detect Florida Crabgrass

by Lynn Ganster, PA 10/07/2019

Most lawns in Florida are susceptible to crabgrass because of the fluctuating wet and dry seasons. Florida experiences dry season from October to April, creating a bare spot on the field or lawn. As a result of this, excess water from irrigation can easily reach the seeds. This situation plus the fact that there are no healthy root systems to compete with it helps the crabgrass to thrive. 

What is the appearance of crabgrass?

The first step towards curbing the spread of crabgrass is to identify if it is present. You can quickly estimate the age of crabgrass by considering the appearance of the weed. The seedlings of crabgrass look like a small corn plant. Crabgrass is green in color and develops side shoots quickly that spread in a star-like pattern. What makes crabgrass different from a normal lawn grass is its width. The crabgrass is thinner and grows from a central point.

The seed of this weed can last for many years in the soil of the lawn. The seed germinates around May and June when the temperature is about 65 to 70-degrees Fahrenheit. The weed will become more noticeable around July. 

Why is crabgrass bad?

Crabgrass is an unwanted plant that takes up valuable space. They may not look terrible when cut, but their elimination will give your lawn a more appealing and uniform look. However, it is difficult to get rid of the grass altogether. The reason why this weed is difficult to kill is that it releases thousands of seeds every year. Moreover, it is not possible to kill every seed as other healthy grass surrounding them will be affected. Because the seeds can last for many years in the soil, it is advisable to look for ways of curbing them rather than getting rid of your entire lawn in an attempt to kill the crabgrass. 

How to control crabgrass? 

One of the ways to control the spread of crabgrass is by achieving a dense root system in your turf. You can accomplish a compact root system by maintaining a healthy lawn. You can also get a dense root system by fertilizing your lawn. Additionally, make sure you don't cut the grass too low to prevent excess water from entering the soil.

You should consider a pre-emergent herbicide; it is the best herbicide that you can use to curb the weed. This granular herbicide should be applied to the soil before it reaches the temperature of 60 degrees Fahrenheit. The herbicide works by creating a chemical barrier at the soil line that the weed cannot infiltrate.

If you are looking for ways to get rid of the crabgrass on your lawn without killing other plants, consider using a crabgrass killer – a pre-emergent herbicide that is prepared solely for that purpose. However, if you’re more concerned about the damage you may do to your lawn, hire a professional lawn care company to handle your weed problem for you.

About the Author

Lynn Ganster, PA

It all began when I was 18 years old and my soon to be husband and I were searching for our first home...

I loved the idea that I could be part of someones life experience but I had a life to live before acting on that idea! I never knew much about the industry, but after seeing the process firsthand of a difficult transaction my husband and I were involved in and how important each part of the ordeal was for both my husband, myself, and the owner, I knew it was something that I wanted to be a part of. Of course, I didn’t pursue real estate until I was finally able to dive in back in 2004, but it’s been a passion for as long as I can remember.